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First Drive: 2016 Roush Ford F-150 SC

Roush Transforms F-150s from Nice to Nasty

Jul 12, 2016
Today, we went from 0 to dirtbag in less than 6 seconds, and we find the new Roush F-150 SC guilty of our supercharged misbehavior—the horn-honking, fist-waving, get-out-of-my-way-you-slow-poking-fast-lane-hogging imbecile.
Roush has transformed a pretty awesome Ford F-150 into an incredible machine. It took Ford’s venerable 5.0L V-8—the same one found in the Mustang—and bolted a 2.3L supercharger to it. This thing sucks in more air than Nyquist on the last 10 furlongs. The superchargers feature Eaton’s Twin Vortices Series technology with twin four-lobe rotors twisted 160-degrees and tweaked by Roush engineers to produce 600 hp and 557 lb-ft of torque at 5,000 rpm. And you always drive this pickup at 5,000 rpm. You can’t help yourself.
Photo 2/41   |   006 2016 Roush Ford F 150 SC
The Roush F-150 RC snaps your head back into the headrest with every start. Its engine barks and intimidates you into driving faster. It makes you angry. Suddenly, you’re barreling up behind someone, the special Roush front grille, with three yellow lights marking the top of it, filling up some unsuspecting driver’s window. They’ll move over. They always do.
Roush charges $22,600 on top of the 5.0L F-150 (a SuperCrew model starts at $34,650) to ship it from the River Rouge plant a few miles away to Roush’s manufacturing facility in metro Detroit. It then does exactly the same thing the final product did to us: make it mean. The supercharger is just one aspect to this pickup. (Note the intake at the base of the grille—more than a few customers have wondered where their winch should go. Hint: You don’t need one.)
On the exterior, there is a hard Roush graphics package that includes Jack Roush’s signature and more Roush branding on the grille, tailgate, hood, and a few other spots we may have missed. People will know it’s a Roush before they know it’s a Ford, which includes badges on the front fenders and tailgate. Roush adds its unique fender flairs on the vehicle, as well its own 20-inch blacked out rims and beautiful Mickey Thompson Baja ATZP3 305/55R20 tires to give that suburban tough-guy veneer.
Photo 3/41   |   033 2016 Roush Ford F 150 SC
If Ford offers it, Roush pickup owners can order it—tailgate steps, sunroofs, an interior package that sparkles. Our “SuperCrew with all the bells and whistles” test vehicle topped $79,000 total, a victim of checking too many boxes. There are 120V outlets, enough cup holders to accommodate a six-pack of Coke, and a center console that can hold three days of groceries. But Ford never skips on function, providing its F-150s with a trailer brake control (properly mounted on the right side of the steering wheel) and an instrument panel that allows for nearly limitless customization. The big centerstack LCD screen includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and is very easy to use. The sports package in the Roush test vehicle included Ford’s red and black leather seats with a matching red trim on everything including the seat belts. One of the best improvements Roush includes on this truck are Weathertech floor mats for the front and back, rebranded with Roush’s logo. They are beautiful, functional, and just as important as a spray-on bedliner.
Most importantly, the truck’s new aluminum conversion makes it as much as 700 pounds lighter, so when the new 600hp supercharged V-8 kicks in, it hauls the truck out of everything. And this Ford handles the power with ease. The driving position is high, and visibility is good in every direction. Add to that the blind spot detection system and it’s easy to be certain that the left or right lane is clear of traffic as you continue to weave through the highway traffic.
Photo 4/41   |   031 2016 Roush Ford F 150 SC
And you will weave. You will swerve. You will not be seen in a favorable light by anyone else on the road. The Roush F-150 SC just doesn’t want to go slow. You’ll find yourself tapping your right foot, goosing the accelerator just to hear that engine grumble a little more as you tell it to say your name. Go on, say it.
This could be one reason why we averaged 13.5 mpg according to digital readout. Typically, Fords do better, but this is not a typical Ford.
At stoplights, you’ll be the first to the other side of the intersection every time. Seriously, every time. People will either despise you and flip you off or envy you, just like you want them to do. Either way, they will be in your rear view mirror soon enough. This pickup is a rocket ship and leaves you laughing.
Photo 5/41   |   010 2016 Roush Ford F 150 SC
The ride, even on the Mickey Thompsons, is fairly smooth. There were some calibration adjustments made to the electric power steering system to handle the big wheels, and it feels taut at any speed. There’s some additional road noise that comes into the cabin, but really, the engine drowns out most of that noise.
Indeed, it’s difficult to tell exactly who the Roush F-150 SC was made for or why you should buy one. If you have already contributed to your child’s college fund, own good season tickets to your favorite team’s venue, still have some money left over, and want your friends just a little bit more jealous of your success, this pickup just might be for you.
That’s not meant to be an insult either. Every vehicle beyond a work truck comes with other motives behind it than something you need. No one needs Roush F-150 SC. And only a few people will eventually own them. It’s 600 hp of screaming fun. That’s why anyone buys it.
Photo 6/41   |   020 2016 Roush Ford F 150 SC
But be warned. But there will be moments—moments you see yourself like it’s an out-of-body experience and you can hardly recognize the person behind the wheel of that truck. The maniacal laughs, the fist-waving punches, none of it will make sense. But then you’ll hear that supercharged engine goading you, pushing you.
Limits were made to be crossed. The Roush F-150 SC just crosses them faster.
2016 Roush F-150 SC
Vehicle type: 4x4 fullsize five-passenger pickup
Base price: $22,600 added to the sticker price of an F-150.
Price as tested: $79,55
Engine: 5.0L supercharged 32 valve, DOHC V-8
Transmission: 6-speed automatic
Horsepower: 600 @ 5,000 rpm
Torque: 557 lb-ft @ 5,000 rpm
EPA mileage rating: 12/15/13 mpg

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